The Pastry Experience You Can’t Miss in Paris: Baking Macarons
La Cuisine Paris is located in the 4th arrondissement, just a block from the Hotel de Ville, and a short walk from the Notre Dame. When you step inside their darling shop, you’re greeted by their friendly, English-speaking staff in a simple, but chic room with branded aprons and classic baking supplies. After greeting the other students in our small, intimate group, we headed downstairs to the kitchen. That’s where we met our wonderful pastry chef and teacher for the day!
La Cuisine Paris has even the most inexperienced bakers covered. All of our ingredients were pre-measured, and our wonderful teacher walked us through each step very slowly. We all took very detailed notes on our recipes, and she provided great explanations for each step we took. She was right when she said that licking your fingers is an occupational hazard. Just look at that meringue! I could have eaten the entire bowl!
All in all, it was an absolutely amazing experience, and I can’t recommend it enough! We only had a few full days in Paris, and we are so glad that we squeezed this wonderful two-hour experience in. Just make a reservation online and head over toward the Île de la Cité for a quick class before visiting the Notre Dame and Sainte Chapelle. They have other classes as well, from making the perfect french baguette to cooking entire meals with ingredients from the market!
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Cheese Tasting at La Cuisine Paris
Did you know that only 25% of French people buy their cheese from a fromagerie? And of that 25, only 3-4% go to an affineur (cheese refiner). Both are the sad realities of a dying tradition in France of sourcing provisions from neighborhood artisans.
Young affineur Baptiste Yapar doesn't let the disheartening takeover of corporate food business dull his passion. The firebrand cheese master focuses his energy on running his shops Au Coeur du Marché (at the Marché d'Aligre) and educating the public. At La Cuisine Paris cooking school, he takes a small group through a complete background of cheese (it didn't begin in France!), methods of production and the various designations and families of cheeses available.
A copious tasting of 7-10 different cheeses (with wine) follows the contextual debut and is, as my friend and I agreed by the end, the closest thing approximating cheese heaven on earth. It is a fascinating two-hour experience that will not only inform how you consider the nuances of cheese in the future but will have you excited to seek out your nearest independent cheese shop for more.
Who doesn't want to know how to cook French cuisine? Even I, lacking any sense of cooking, would love to learn how to make a delicious chocolate mousse, for myself and my guests. For this matter, Paris is filled with cooking schools that offer various cooking and baking classes geared towards locals and tourists alike.
One of them is La Cuisine Paris, located in the heart of the city and offering cooking classes in English. You can learn how to make a 3-course meal, how to make macarons, bake croissants as well as pain au chocolat or learn all about different cheeses.
The staff includes skilled international professional chefs (French and non-French). If you don't feel like cooking, and just want to explore the 'outside' of the kitchen, you can sign up for a Food Tour at various locations.
Learn to bake French breads while staying in Paris!
La Cuisine Paris offers many cooking classes (in English or French) which an excellent way to learn a little bit about French culture and the secrets of some of their foods. There are macaron classes and market classes, but the one I chose to take was the French baguette class. Not only did I learn about making this iconic daily nourishment but I learned various methods for rolls and a pizza-like delicacy called a Fougasse. Best part? I got to eat everything I made! Plus I got to meet people from all over the world hungry for francophile favorites!
Of all the things I did in Paris, taking a cooking class with my cousin was my most memorable experience. The market tour was awesome. We sampled things and bought all of our ingredients for the meal we would prepare back at the kitchen, (which all felt very Parisian) The cooking was fun and easy-we filleted our own fish (dorado) and cooked it with our veggies and seasonings of choice, then made a chocolate souffle with rasberries for dessert. The meal was served with bread and butter, dried sausage, salad, and a delicious wine all included-it was probably my favorite meal I had in Paris! Plus, the chef was very funny and informative.
Fabulous Foodie Fun overlooking the Legendary Seine
I had the pleasure of attending La Cuisine Paris earlier this month and am so glad that I did! The school is in a great location right near the Hotel de Ville. The kitchen is on the 2nd floor. It's sparkling clean, modern, and well organized. Each student has their own station complete with a cutting board, knives, apron and recipes. The class I signed up for was called Dejeuner in Paris and the menu we cooked (and ate) included Duck Confit with potatoes, salad with a traditional vinaigrette, and almond and pear tarts. The class was led by a very likeable young chef from Texas. I learned quite a lot from Chef Justin, and appreciated him answering my questions about how eggs could be sold in the markets without refrigeration.
The best part of this class was that it was totally hands-on, and everyone had a part in making every dish. Plus the food and wine were excellent! It was also fun meeting the other students in the class - fellow cooking enthusiasts from Canada, the US, and Australia.
The owners of La Cuisine Paris are very warm and friendly, and genuinely like people. They go out of their way to be helpful. After class, Jane passed out maps of the area showing the location of shops and restaurants that a group of foodies might be interested in visiting.